Eyes Home > Does Lutein Work?

Some research studies have suggested that lutein may be effective for some uses, such as improving certain symptoms of macular degeneration, reducing the risk of developing macular degeneration, and improving the appearance of wrinkles. However, much more research is needed to confirm whether or not lutein actually works as claimed.

Does Lutein Really Work?

Does lutein really help prevent or treat eye problems? Can it help with heart disease? Lutein is claimed to work for a few different conditions, although some potential benefits are more legitimate than others. This article will address the effectiveness of lutein for a few different uses, including:
Does It Work for Eye Health?
Studies have suggested that people with a high dietary intake of lutein may have a lower risk for developing macular degeneration. However, there is some conflicting evidence, because one study showed a dietary intake of lutein was unrelated to the risk of developing some of the early stages of macular degeneration.
It is not yet clear if lutein supplementation would be as effective as an increased dietary intake through a diet rich in fruits and vegetables for preventing macular degeneration.
Studies have also suggested that lutein may improve some of the symptoms of macular degeneration, although it does not appear to slow down the progression of the disease.
Research suggests that people with a high dietary intake of lutein may also have a lower risk of serious cataracts (the kind that require surgical removal), although it is unclear if supplementation provides equal benefits.
At this time, there is not enough evidence to suggest that lutein works (or does not work) for treating retinitis pigmentosa.
Although there is good evidence that lutein does work for some eye health uses, there is little evidence to suggest that the supplement would be helpful for improving vision in general for people without any specific eye condition such as macular degeneration.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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